PLoS One published a study by Stevan Walkowski and colleagues in 2014, scrutinizing the claimed enhancement of immune response in course of OMT. The researchers investigated whether OMT induces a rapid modification of cytokine and leukocyte levels in circulation. Therefore, healthy subjects were treated with lymphatic and thoracic OMT. Afterwards, cytokine levels were evaluated using protein array technology and ELISA multiplex analysis while leukocyte levels were evaluated using multicolor flow cytometry. Results showed no difference in levels of plasma nitrites, C-reactive protein, CD4 and CD8 T cells, however, significant decrease in blood dendritic cells and significant difference in levels of immune molecules like IL-8, MCP-1, MIP-1a and G-CSF were detected. The authors concluded that OMT is able to induce a rapid change in the immunological profile of circulating cytokines and leukocytes.
Walkowski, S., Singh, M., Puertas, J., Pate, M., Goodrum, K., Benencia, F., 2014. Osteopathic manipulative therapy induces early plasma cytokine release and mobilization of a population of blood dendritic cells. PLoS One, 9(3), e90132.